South Africa’s telecommunication provider, Telkom said that the streaming giant, Netflix will no longer be available on the South African phone and internet company’s set-top box from October.
A deal between the parties has come to an end and will not be renewed, Content Executive Wanda Mkhize said in a statement, without giving a specific reason. Other content partnerships will be announced in due course, she said.
According to Moneyweb, the move comes after MultiChoice, Africa’s largest pay-TV provider, signed deals with Netflix and Amazon.com to offer their streaming services through its new decoder.
The continent is a small market for paid streaming video, with just a few million subscribers out of a population of more than 1 billion, and the US giants have targeted it for future growth.
Netflix has started to produce more local content, debuting South African dramas Queen Son and Blood and Water in recent years. The US company has also appointed its first African board member, Zimbabwean media tycoon Strive Masiyiwa, in a bid to grow on the continent.
Earlier this year, the business intelligence company Digital TV Research projected that Netflix may end 2021 with 2.61 million streaming subscribers in Africa and more than double that to 5.84 million by 2026.
The Hollywood Reporter says this would make the global streamer the leader in the space on the African continent. Digital TV Research forecast that subscription video-on-demand users in Africa would, by 2026, number 15.06 million, triple the 5.11 million expected at the end of 2021.
“From the 10 million additions, South Africa and Nigeria will each supply 2.3 million,” the firm said. “These two will be the only countries with more than 1 million subscriptions.”
Showmax, owned by MultiChoice, is currently ranked second with an estimated 861 000 subscribers at the end of 2021. And the company predicts it will reach 2.12 million in five years. Meanwhile, Digital TV Research predicts Amazon will grow from 575 000 subscribers this year to nearly 1.93 million in 2026, and Apple TV+ is projected to climb from 121 000 to 304 000 subscribers.